Jannik Sinner’s golden season was tarnished on Saturday, with the world No. 2 forced to withdraw from the Rome Masters due to his continuing hip injury.

The absence of the reigning Australian Open winner comes as a body blow to organisers at the Foro Italico, whose event begins on Wednesday as part of the controversial new expanded Masters format.

Sinner detailed his heartache in a social media post:

“It is not easy to write this message but after speaking again with the doctors and specialists about my hip problems I have to announce that unfortunately I will not be able to play in Rome.

“Obviously I’m very sad that I didn’t recover, it being one of my favorite tournaments ever. I couldn’t wait to come back and play at home in front of the Italian crowd.

“I will still come to Rome for a few days and stop by the Foro Italico. Thank you for your messages of support which I appreciate very much! Now I will work with my team and doctors to be ready for Roland Garros. See you soon.”

The 22-year-old has also won titles in Rotterdam and Miami this season, but was forced to withdraw before his Madrid Masters quarter-final, handing a win to Felix Auger-Aliassime.

He also played 2024 semi-finals in Indian Wells and Miami this spring.